Good posting today from Jim Holincheck at Gartner noting how interested the big ERP players are in delivery Human Capital Management solutions via SaaS.
Apparently, the SaaS vendors are providing what the ERP/HRMS solutions can’t: rapid point solutions that meet a need without having to go through the pain of upgrading their entire ERP suite.
Fair enough. However, I don’t entirely agree with Jim’s prognosis for the future….
Jim suggests that the ERP vendors may be able to overcome this problem, but not purely by providing solutions via SaaS:
[the SaaS delivery model] will only solve the problem if the ERP/HRMS vendor changes its primary delivery model to SaaS (so upgrades become less of an issue) or it decouples the talent management applications from the core HRMS applications. If the ERP/HRMS vendor decouples the talent management applications from the core applications, allows it work on top of any of the supported releases of the core applications (and is delivered via the SaaS model), it could work.
Fair enough, but I just can’t see it happening. Would Oracle or SAP really alter their entire delivery method to SaaS for even one module? It would be at least an organisational nightmare, and set a precedent for clients who might expect that other modules from the vendor be available via SaaS – an expectation that could not possibly be fulfilled, leading to a disgruntled client base.
Unfortunately at present clients with substantial ERP implementations cannot get what they need via SaaS offerings or from the ERP providers themselves. They need to understand the skills of their people, to analyse it, and to distribute that information across different HR processes.
SaaS offerings don’t provide that, because they don’t do the integration side.
The ERP competency modules don’t (yet) have the required depth of functionality.
But there is an alternative.
The solution that we’ve deployed at InfoBasis is to deploy our technology behind the firewall and integrate it with the client’s existing ERP infrastructure. (This also works for integration with LMS implementations, too, where commonly the LMS has a limited understanding of competencies.)
This approach enables organisations to get a grip on their people’s skills, and to use skills data across other HR processes handled by the ERP/HRMS. It isn’t rocket science, but it is effective.
I usually avoid sounding like a marketing platform for InfoBasis on this blog, but in this case it just seemed important to add that – excellent though they are – SaaS and ERP/HRMS are not the only ways to get your Human Capital Management done.